Parents & Caregivers: Children should never be allowed to ride on or be near a riding lawn mower while it's being used.
Nationally, around 9,500 children end up in the emergency department each year with lawn mower-related injuries. They range from burns after touching hot engines and puncture wounds from flying debris to limbs severed by blades that spin at 3,000 rpm.
As a pediatric nurse, most of my career was spent on post surgical units. I saw so many children whose lives were changed by something 100% preventable.
Rather than planning their summer vacation, riding bikes, and swimming - they were thrust into rehab for their amputation or into countless appointments for burn management.
The safest place for your child to be while the yard is being mowed is inside. Oftentimes the person mowing doesn't even realize there is a child near them or approaching.
Children can be injured by toys, rocks, and other objects being thrown by the mowing blade.
Another common way children are injured is when they run behind the mower path and the operator unknowingly backs up over them. (Thankfully new models no longer have the reverse feature).
Make sure if your child will be in the care of grandparents that you also relay this important information.
If you want to give your child the "experience" of riding, please disengage the mower blades before doing so.